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Drive (2011) - SPOILER ALERT! 
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Post Drive (2011) - SPOILER ALERT!
I know that we already have a film club here, so I thought that I would open up a separate thread just for discussion of one of my favorite movies of 2011: Nicolas Winding Refn's Drive.


Last edited by Sean on Mon Apr 15, 2013 9:19 pm, edited 1 time in total.



Mon Apr 15, 2013 6:24 pm
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Post Re: Drive (2011)
Sean wrote:
I know that we already have a film club here, so I thought that I would open up a separate thread just for discussion of one of my favorite movies of 2011: Nicolas Winding Refn's Drive.


Style is too sterile and static, not much plot, nothing really to think about, and a strong but severely underused performance by Albert Brooks. Brooks' performance deserves a better script. Its status as an instant cult classic doesn't make sense to me, but many people here loved it so I'm sure there's a lot to discuss. I can say it's also hugely popular among film students, most of whom probably haven't seen The Driver from 1978. Still, I don't like Walter Hill's version of this story very much either.


Mon Apr 15, 2013 7:20 pm
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Post Re: Drive (2011)
Thought it was decent, but wasn't really blown away like most critics were.


Mon Apr 15, 2013 7:53 pm
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Post Re: Drive (2011)
I pretty much agree with Vexer and MGames.

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Mon Apr 15, 2013 9:02 pm
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Post Re: Drive (2011)
Sean wrote:
I know that we already have a film club here, so I thought that I would open up a separate thread just for discussion of one of my favorite movies of 2011: Nicolas Winding Refn's Drive.

Little note of trivia: Refn was originally trying to cast only porn stars for the role of Blanche but wound up going with Christina Hendricks because porn stars didn't have the acting ability to carry the role off. Who knew?

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Mon Apr 15, 2013 9:17 pm
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Post Re: Drive (2011)
Ragnarok73 wrote:
Sean wrote:
I know that we already have a film club here, so I thought that I would open up a separate thread just for discussion of one of my favorite movies of 2011: Nicolas Winding Refn's Drive.

Little note of trivia: Refn was originally trying to cast only porn stars for the role of Blanche but wound up going with Christina Hendricks because porn stars didn't have the acting ability to carry the role off. Who knew?

Well maybe Sasha Grey could have.


Mon Apr 15, 2013 9:18 pm
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Post Re: Drive (2011)
MGamesCook wrote:
Sean wrote:
I know that we already have a film club here, so I thought that I would open up a separate thread just for discussion of one of my favorite movies of 2011: Nicolas Winding Refn's Drive.


Style is too sterile and static, not much plot, nothing really to think about, and a strong but severely underused performance by Albert Brooks. Brooks' performance deserves a better script. Its status as an instant cult classic doesn't make sense to me, but many people here loved it so I'm sure there's a lot to discuss. I can say it's also hugely popular among film students, most of whom probably haven't seen The Driver from 1978. Still, I don't like Walter Hill's version of this story very much either.

I completely disagree. Drive borrows a great deal from the The Driver, yet its own unique style still radiates throughout.

Drive left a serious impression on me for a variety of reasons. The first time I saw it, I knew that it was a special film, a movie that comes around only once in a blue moon. From the opening shot, we know that this is a moody, atmospheric neo-noir. We know that these characters reside in the shadows, that they are people running away from their pasts and who are apprehensive about their futures. The title itself refers not just to Ryan Gosling's machismo behind the wheel, but also the very force that moves these characters toward one another, as well as the one that ultimately pits the Driver against the film's antagonists.

Albert Brooks' performance as Bernie Rose is astounding. The fact that he was snubbed for Best Supporting Actor was a serious upset (in my opinion), although I suppose that the Academy rarely recognizes action films, even ones as ambitious as Drive. From the minute that he is introduced, we know that this a character with sinister motives. He takes an immediate interest in the Driver, and the first confrontation between the two features one of my favorite pieces of dialogue from the entire movie ("My hands are a little dirty." "So are mine."). The fact that Brooks was willing to shave off his eyebrows in order to mask his character's emotions speaks greatly of his commitment to the role.

What makes Drive so candid, however, is the fact that the film takes many conventions of the action genre and feeds them into a blender. Sure, the plot of the film might not be as unique as one might hope, but it truly does things with this storyline that so many movies nowadays are not ambitious enough to do. Opening with an exhilarating chase scene, then spending the next 20 or so minutes focusing on the family dynamic with Irene, demonstrates a rare skill that only a handful of directors nowadays are willing to exhibit. While Drive is a stellar action movie, it is the scenes between the characters, where they are saying nothing, that truly make the movie one of 2011's best. Just with his eyes, Ryan Gosling communicates Driver's longing for Irene, his desperation to leave the world of organized crime, and his realization that this might never be possible. For these reasons alone, Drive qualifies as a truly mesmerizing piece of existentialist art.

I know that this might come across as a mini-review, but like I said, I love Drive. Plus, I was hoping that others who enjoyed the movie as much as I did might have some in-depth feelings about the movie which they would like to share.
Vexer wrote:
Thought it was decent, but wasn't really blown away like most critics were.

Many who went into Drive thinking that it was a traditional actioner might have walked out disappointed. The movie advertised itself as something of a Statham-esque thriller, when in reality, the movie is much more rewarding. On the other hand, the red-band trailer for Only God Forgives is quite upfront in communicating its arthouse nature.


Mon Apr 15, 2013 9:18 pm
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Post Re: Drive (2011) - SPOILER ALERT!
Oh I was well aware that Drive was not going to be a "conventional" film going in, but I still found that the film ultimately didn't live up to the many gushing reviews it received.


Mon Apr 15, 2013 9:22 pm
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Post Re: Drive (2011) - SPOILER ALERT!
Sean wrote:
I know that we already have a film club here, so I thought that I would open up a separate thread just for discussion of one of my favorite movies of 2011: Nicolas Winding Refn's Drive.


Are you sure that after 2, 3, even 4 rewatches you won't change your mind and give it a 1 star review?

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Mon Apr 15, 2013 9:56 pm
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Post Re: Drive (2011) - SPOILER ALERT!
I've seen Drive at least five times. And no.


Tue Apr 16, 2013 7:03 pm
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Post Re: Drive (2011) - SPOILER ALERT!
I also find this film to be very mean-spirited and a little insensitive. A lot of hatred running through it. Same thing I felt with Django Unchained. Whether a movie is well-made or not, pure, unchecked hate isn't a pleasant feeling for me over the course of 90 minutes or more. Drive opens with a chilled out, existential vibe, which lasts about 40 minutes before slowly giving way to pure hatred. Hatred for what exactly? I don't know, but it puts me off. Violence I can deal with, it all depends on tone.


Tue Apr 16, 2013 9:10 pm
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Post Re: Drive (2011) - SPOILER ALERT!
Drive's problem can be summed up in two words - Ryan Gosling.

Whether Gosling is a bit of a lightweight actor, or whether he was just badly cast here is a moot point (both in my opinion). But he isn't believable in the role as the brooding loner who sells his services to the criminal communty.

It's hard to picture a life story that begins with the disney club and ends with him as a hitman/getaway driver. Also, the film's minimalist style goes too far for my liking. It's like a Miss USA winner addressing Congress screaming "please take me seriously, I'm vewy vewy smart ".

The film left me wanting all-out cheesy action, instead of the shallow, existential melodrama it served up.

I was mildly entertained , but no more.

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Wed Apr 17, 2013 3:42 am
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Post Re: Drive (2011) - SPOILER ALERT!
Quote:
The film left me wanting all-out cheesy action, instead of the shallow, existential melodrama it served up.


Good way to put it.

Quote:
But he isn't believable in the role as the brooding loner who sells his services to the criminal communty.


Even better. I believed him as a brooding loner; just not as a man of violence. I think most violent people are like the Brooks and Perlman characters; lively, talkative, and friendly until they get pissed off. Gosling's character doesn't come across as a Travis Bickle; more like a guy who's deliberately acting a certain way. Probably a tactic to make his enemies underestimate him. The unbelievable thing for me is that any real criminals would trust him, or be drawn to work with him. I still love Reservoir Dogs because it feels realistic to me. Tarantino wisely cast veteran thug-actors. I really believed Brooks as a killer. Not so with Perlman or Cranston, and especially not so with the guy Gosling kills in the elevator.


Wed Apr 17, 2013 5:20 am
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Post Re: Drive (2011) - SPOILER ALERT!
Yeah, Brooks was the star. I like Perlman as an actor, but I don't think he was given enough here.

Drive does some things well. But some (important) parts of it become farcical.

The overwhelming feeling I got from Drive is that my bullsh!t filter is set too high to swallow, and therefore really enjoy, the product as a whole.

It strikes me as a kind of flashy but juvenile immitation of a real thriller. I didn't hate it, but I felt let down.

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Wed Apr 17, 2013 8:59 am
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Post Re: Drive (2011) - SPOILER ALERT!
I've only seen Drive once and likely will not seek it out again, but I think it is one of the best movies I've seen in recent years. I understand the comments about a pretty boy being a thug, but bought it in this case due to his occupation. I also felt hatred was central to the movie and was more self directed (the Gosling character hated himself for ever becoming what he was). In that regard, I think Gosling was good for the role since it also required significant protective instincts that a realistic thug would not allow to muddle the decision making process. My only gripe was the stylistic slo-mo stuff. All that did for me was to slow down the movie. I really like the way LA was depicted in fairly natural settings instead of being transformed into some dark and gritty place to fit the tone of the story.


Wed Apr 17, 2013 10:36 am
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Post Re: Drive (2011) - SPOILER ALERT!
NotHughGrant wrote:
Yeah, Brooks was the star. I like Perlman as an actor, but I don't think he was given enough here.

Drive does some things well. But some (important) parts of it become farcical.

The overwhelming feeling I got from Drive is that my bullsh!t filter is set too high to swallow, and therefore really enjoy, the product as a whole.

It strikes me as a kind of flashy but juvenile immitation of a real thriller. I didn't hate it, but I felt let down.

Agreed, I didn't buy Gosling as a killer either. That scene in the elavator actually made me laugh(along with a few other audience members) because it was just so ridiculously over-the-top that I could not take it seriously.


Wed Apr 17, 2013 12:53 pm
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Post Re: Drive (2011) - SPOILER ALERT!
That scene sums up the film's problems brilliantly.

(Sorry, Sean. I feel like we're peeing on your thread)

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Wed Apr 17, 2013 2:25 pm
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Post Re: Drive (2011) - SPOILER ALERT!
Maybe I'll suggest this as a possible title for the next edition of film club. Until then, would anyone who has nothing really compelling or thought-provoking to bring to the discussion kindly clear out? :D


Wed Apr 17, 2013 4:43 pm
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Post Re: Drive (2011) - SPOILER ALERT!
Well, here's one more point that's compelling for me at least. Throughout the film, Gosling is suggested to be sharp. He has an instinct for danger. Therefore it makes no sense to me that he would let Brooks get the edge on him in the end. I think even the average joe would be smart enough not to follow an angry mobster into a secluded area of the parking lot. Still, I suppose this sort of thing comes up even in the best movies. In Godfather, I don't believe the drug lord and the cop would be dumb enough to fall for the gun hidden in bathroom stall trick.


Wed Apr 17, 2013 9:21 pm
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Post Re: Drive (2011) - SPOILER ALERT!
Superb soundtrack, no?

I'd love to do some night driving to Nightcall.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MV_3Dpw-BRY

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